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Cycle Peak

Feb 05 2022

Hello To The Roaring Thirties?!

  • Feb 5, 2022

The ink hadn’t dried on 2020’s PPP checks when pundits began speculating that the new decade could be a repeat of last century’s “Roaring Twenties.” That’s become a popular view after a booming 5.7%  real GDP growth and a nearly 30% stock market gain in 2021. Just how popular? Analysts are already extrapolating their bullish views into the 2030s! 

Dec 07 2021

A 2023 Inflation Peak?

  • Dec 7, 2021

We don’t profess to be professional inflation forecasters, but are struck by a sort of “temporal” mismatch in the arguments used by those who believed the inflation pick up would be temporary. Specifically, the most commonly-cited bullish inflation arguments have been secular in nature, based on long-term trends in technological innovation, demographics, and free trade.

Dec 07 2021

“Peak Insanity” Is Behind Us

  • Dec 7, 2021

We think 2021 has earned its place in the books as the wildest and most speculative year in U.S. stock-market history, eclipsing even 1929 and 1999. That doesn’t mean 2022 will bring a panic or a crash, maybe just a degree of sobriety.

Sep 24 2021

The EPS Recovery And "The Cycle"

  • Sep 24, 2021

In a couple of weeks, final second quarter EPS for the S&P 500 will confirm the fastest recovery ever from a recession-related earnings decline. That’s old news, and before it has even hit the tape. But we’ve had a sneak peak from the monthly, 12-month trailing EPS numbers published by MSCI for its USA Large Cap Index. Those figures showed that EPS exceeded their pre-COVID peak in May, and the latest reading (through August) is already 22% above the prior high! Simple trendline analysis suggests that EPS for U.S. Large Caps are likely higher today than they would have been in the absence of the COVID pandemic and hyper-stimulative response. 

 

Jul 08 2021

The Inflation Surge In Context

  • Jul 8, 2021

Inflation is already “too high” for the current cyclical setting, and the level of inflation that equity investors are willing to tolerate will drop further as the economy recovers.

Apr 08 2021

A Pricey Alternative To The S&P 500?

  • Apr 8, 2021

This month we focus on the valuations of the MSCI USA Index—which is nearly identical to the S&P 500. This is worth following mainly because the folks at MSCI are kind enough to provide us with much longer-term histories of Cash Flow and Book Value Per Share.

Oct 07 2020

The Use And Abuse Of Corporate Debt

  • Oct 7, 2020

U.S. corporations piled on almost $1 trillion in debt over the first six months of the year (a 10% increase). Corporate debt has now surged to 56% of GDP. We’ve argued that the level of corporate debt isn’t the problem, in and of itself. Rather, it’s what this debt has failed to generate that is the real problem.

May 07 2020

Calculate The Next Low... With The Last Peak?

  • May 7, 2020

How does one value a stock market in which 12-month forward EPS estimates show their widest dispersion in history? A good start might be with methods we use when forward estimates show practically no dispersion (like three months ago). In either case, we place little weight on such estimates; each revision usually has only marginal impact on our 5-Year Normalized EPS.